Dr. Wendy Lenz to be Featured on TV, Radio in Promotion of “Totes 2 Tots”

Tuesday, January 8th, 2008

Chief Operating Officer of Georgia Cancer Specialists Will Discuss the Sixth Annual Suitcase Drive on Chattanooga News Channel 9, Fox 5 Atlanta, and WSB-AM Radio

Georgia Cancer Specialists (GCS) COO Dr. Wendy Lenz will appear on three major media outlets to promote the “Totes 2 Tots” suitcase drive for foster children during the week leading up to the event.

Dr. Lenz will be featured on Chattanooga News Channel 9’s “Focus” (airing Saturday, January 12), on Fox 5 Atlanta’s “Good Day” (airing Monday, January 14), and in 15 and 60-second WSB-TV PSAs  (airing from January 14-18).

“It’s great to have the opportunity to make these appearances in support of Georgia’s foster children,” Dr. Lenz said. “What a wonderful way to ensure that this year’s event is the most successful to date.”

“Totes 2 Tots” delivers new or nearly new suitcases to foster children in Georgia, many of whom must shuffle their belongings from home to home in garbage bags during frequent relocations. The annual volunteer event was first launched by GCS in 2003 and has collected and distributed over 8,200 bags.

This year’s 25 locations—expanded from 13 in 2007—include GCS offices in Alpharetta, Athens, Atlanta, Austell, Blairsville, Blue Ridge, Canton, Conyers, Cumming, Decatur, Duluth, Douglasville, Fayetteville, Griffin, Jasper, Lawrenceville, Macon, Marietta, Milledgeville, Oconee, Fort Oglethorpe/Ringgold, Snellville, and Stockbridge.

In 2005, WSB-TV recognized the importance of the drive and agreed to support it as a part of its Family 2 Family Project. This will be the fourth year that GCS and WSB-TV have partnered for “Totes 2 Tots.” Family 2 Family is the longest running locally produced, comprehensive, station-wide public service effort in Georgia. It includes shows such as People 2 People, a weekly half-hour public affairs program hosted by Jocelyn Dorsey that chronicles events and newsmakers in metro Atlanta.

Totes 2 Tots -Off Locations

Click Location for a MapQuest Map

Statistics About Georgia’s Foster Children

  • 15,119 children were in foster care as of December 2005
  • 30% of those children have been in foster care more than 24 months
  • 50% were African-American
  • 41% were less than 6 years old
  • 67% were younger than 12
  • About 2,237 of those children were staying with relatives
  • About 8,386 were staying in foster homes
  • About 1,561 were in group homes
  • About 974 were housed in institutions
  • Approximately 8% of the children discharged will re-enter foster care within 1 year
  • Foster parents are reimbursed according to the age of the child: birth to 5, $13.75; 6-12, $15.50; 13 and above, $17.75. The rate is higher for children needing medical care or a higher level of supervision. Medical treatment and clothing costs are covered by the agency.
  • Georgia’s 200 group homes are reimbursed for about 68% of their costs
  • Georgia’s 4,174 foster parents are reimbursed for about 67% of their costs
  • Those 4,174 families save the state approximately $34 million per year
  • Georgia ranks 39 out of 50 states in overall child well being

**Statistics from Governor Sonny Perdue’s web site:

http://www.gov.state.ga.us/summit_fl/statistics.shtml

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